3 Things to Consider Before Developing a Strategy to Increase Website Traffic
When it comes to growing your website's traffic, there are a lot of different strategies you can use. However, before you start implementing any of them, there are a few key things you need to consider to set yourself up for success.
#1 Understand Your Audience
One of the most important things to consider before developing your strategy to increase website traffic is understanding your target audience. You need a clear picture of who your ideal visitor is and what they are looking for on your site. This will help you tailor your content, messaging, and overall strategy to better appeal to your target audience.
The following are some tips to help you better understand your ideal visitor and how this knowledge can help you develop a better strategy to increase traffic to your website.
Conduct Market Research
Market research is a great way to learn more about your target audience, including their demographics, habits, and pain points. You can conduct research through surveys, focus groups, interviews, or by analyzing existing data from your website analytics.
By looking at the data you compile from surveys, focus groups, and interviews, you can get a good idea of what your target audience wants from your website.
Your website analytics will help you understand who is currently visiting your website. When you compare this information to the data you get from surveys, focus groups, and interviews you can see how your website may need to change to serve your ideal visitor better.
Analyze Your Audience's Behavior
Your website analytics can also provide valuable information about your audience's behavior on your website. You can see which pages they visit, how long they stay on each page, and what actions they take. Analyzing this data can help you identify patterns and trends, which can further inform your strategy to increase website traffic.
There are several different tools you can use to understand your website analytics. Google Analytics is a great starting point because it's free. And here's a list of what Hubspot considers to be the best website traffic analysis tools. (Yes, their tool is first on the list.)
Listen to Your Audience's Feedback
Another great way to understand your audience is to simply listen to their feedback. Whether it's through social media, email, or a contact form on your website, take note of what your visitors are saying about your brand and site.
You can even incentivize the feedback with surveys or polls to get more responses. This feedback can provide valuable insights into what your audience likes and dislikes, and what they want to see more of on your site.
Understanding who your target audience is, what they want, and how to best engage them will help you develop a more effective strategy to increase website traffic. Remember that audience understanding is an ongoing process that needs to be regularly reviewed and updated.
#2 Evaluate Your Current Traffic
Another essential thing to evaluate before developing your strategy to increase website traffic is your current traffic. Understanding how people are currently interacting with your site will help you identify areas that need improvement and can inform the direction of your traffic-growth strategy.
Analyze Who Your Current Visitors Are
Website analytics can provide a wealth of information about your current traffic. This includes data on things like the number of visitors, their demographics, where they're coming from, and what types of devices they're using. By analyzing this data, you can identify patterns and trends that can inform your strategy to increase website traffic.
Look at How Your Current Visitors Are Interacting with Your Site
Bounce rate, time on site, landing pages, exit pages, and conversion rate are key metrics to evaluate on your website traffic.
Bounce rate measures the percentage of visitors who leave your site after only viewing one page. A high bounce rate could indicate that your site is not meeting the needs of your visitors or that the content is irrelevant.
Knowing which pages visitors arrive and exit from along with how many they visit can help you understand how they are consuming the information on your site.
Time on site measures how long visitors stay on your site and can indicate how engaging your content is.
Conversion rate measures the number of visitors who take a desired action on your site, such as making a purchase or filling out a contact form, and helps you understand how effectively your website is converting visitors into customers or leads.
Compare to Industry Benchmarks
Comparing your website's performance to industry benchmarks can also provide valuable insight into how well your site is performing. Look for standards related to bounce rate, time on site, and conversion rate, and use them to evaluate your own website's performance. If your site is performing significantly worse than the benchmarks, it may indicate that there are areas of your site that need improvement.
By analyzing website analytics and key metrics, and comparing your website's performance to industry benchmarks, you can identify areas for improvement and make data-driven decisions about how to grow your website's visibility and reach. With this information, you can create a more effective strategy to increase website traffic by identifying areas that need improvement, as well as opportunities to optimize your content, messaging, and overall approach.
As with understanding your audience, evaluating your current audience is an ongoing process. It needs to be regularly reviewed, and updated based on new trends and behaviors of your audience.
#3 Identify Your Goals
The last thing to consider before developing your strategy to increase website traffic is knowing why you're doing it. Without clear objectives, it's virtually impossible to measure success and determine if your efforts are having the desired effect. Once you know what you're trying to accomplish, you can focus your efforts on the tactics and strategies that will help you achieve your goals.
Determine Your Primary Business Objectives
The first step in identifying your goals is determining your primary business objectives. What do you hope to achieve through your traffic-growth efforts? Are you looking to boost sales, build brand awareness, or something else entirely? Understanding your primary business objectives will help you set specific, measurable goals for your traffic-growth strategy.
Set SMART Goals
Once you know what you're trying to accomplish, you can set specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound goals. For example, if your primary business objective is to boost sales, your specific, measurable goal might be to increase online sales by 20% in the next six months. If your primary objective is to increase brand awareness, your specific, measurable goal might be to increase website traffic by 30% in this quarter.
Create a Timeline
Once you've set specific, measurable goals, you need to create a timeline for achieving them. This will help you stay on track and measure your progress over time. For example, if your goal is to increase online sales by 20% within the next six months, you'll want to set milestones to measure progress along the way. That way you can ensure you're on track to achieve your goal by the end of that period.
Align your goals with your audience understanding and current traffic analysis
It's also important to align your goals with your understanding of your audience and the analysis of your current traffic. With this step, you'll be able to ensure the goals you set are realistic and can be achieved with the current and potential audience, and with the right strategies, tactics, and improvements.
By determining your primary business objectives, setting specific, measurable goals, creating a timeline, and aligning with your audience understanding and current traffic analysis, you can make sure your strategy to increase website traffic is focused, data-driven, and ultimately more likely to succeed.
I'm beginning to feel like a broken record here. You need to regularly review and adjust your goals as your business and audience evolve over time.
By understanding your ideal visitor, evaluating your current website traffic, and gaining clarity on your goals, you can ensure your strategy to increase website traffic is well-informed, data-driven, and ultimately more likely to succeed. Increasing website traffic is a long-term process; setting up a clear goal and working towards it will help you measure your progress and also help you take corrective action when you hit roadblocks.